Agri-Tech Global Project Awards for Universities of Lincoln, Cambridge and East Anglia

Awards at a glance

Who is eligible?

All projects must be led by an academic from either the University Lincoln, Cambridge or East Anglia. If you are a researcher at any of these Universities and have an idea for a project, we want to hear from you. Contact us at info@ceresagritech.org for more information.

What can a Agri-Tech Global Project Award support?

Agri-Tech Global Proof of Concept support translational research projects in plant agri-tech innovations, excluding small molecule agro-chemicals and traditional plant variety breeding. Technologies must be relevant to agri-tech but can come from a variety of one or more scientific disciplines, e.g. plant or crop sciences, genetics as well as robotics, chemistry, computer science, etc. These plant agri-tech innovations must have commercial potential with economic, environmental and/or social impacts in Greater Lincolnshire and the East of England.

Projects must be internationally collaborative, preferably with Universities or businesses from the US, Australia and the Netherlands.

How does it work?

Ceres will provide quick access to milestoned Agri-Tech Global translational investment, anywhere between £50,000-£250,000 per project (80% FEC), based on a pitch to the Ceres Investment Committee. Funding rounds are held quarterly, with quick decisions.

April 2024 Call

High potential projects will be invited to a Bid Development Workshop at the Lincoln Institute of Agri-Food Technology, University of Lincoln, on 4th and 5th July 2024 where the Ceres Team will help you to develop your idea and pitchdeck for presentation to the Ceres Investment Committee.

 

How to apply

If you are a researcher from an academic from University of Lincoln, Cambridge or East Anglia and have an idea for a commercially relevant plant agri-tech project, we want to hear from you.

Please see details of the application process below

What are the funding criteria for Agri-Tech Global Project Awards?

Projects must

  • Be led by a researcher from the Universities of Lincoln, Cambridge or East Anglia. We encourage cross discipline collaboration within a university and between the three universities.
  • Collaborate internationally with researchers and growers e.g. from USA, Australia and Netherlands; either as subcontractor or as a collaborator if they match resources.
  • In plant agri-tech, excluding small molecule agri-chemicals and traditional plant variety breeding.
  • Technologies must be relevant to plant agri-tech but can come from a variety of one or more scientific disciplines, e.g. plant or crop sciences, robotics, chemistry, computer science, etc.
  • Have strong commercial potential.
  • With defendable IP.
  • Have appropriate project work packages and milestones.
  • Have impact in Greater Lincolnshire and East Anglia.

Universities must

  • The lead university must manage any intellectual property produced by the project (foreground IP)
  • The recipient University must undertake to diligently commercialise the research and seek support and input from the Ceres team as appropriate.

Application process for Agri-Tech Global Project Awards

Please see Deadlines Table for submission deadlines for the Agri-Tech Global call for which you are applying.

Stage 1: Complete the Agri-Tech Global Project Awards Expression of Interest (EOI) Form for Universities of Lincoln, Cambridge and East Anglia (UEA) and email to info@ceresagritech.org by the EOI submission deadline for the Agri-Tech Global Project Award Call for which you are applying.

Any submissions received post the Project Award EOI submission closing date will be carried forward to the next Project Call, unless you write to withdraw your application.

Stage 2: The EOIs will be short-listed and ranked.

For high potential projects, a member of the Ceres Team will be in touch to discuss your proposal and if it is suitable for Agri-Tech Global funding.

Stage 3:  The Ceres Team will help you develop your idea and will connect you to relevant international farmers and growers in our network to ensure your innovation meets their needs.

The  Ceres Team will support you to create your pitchdeck. For guidance see Agri-Tech Global Project Awards Sample Pitchdeck for Universities of Lincoln, Cambridge and East Anglia (UEA)

Stage 4: Complete pitchdeck and practise pitching.

Stage 5: Submit to info@ceresagritech.org by the final slidedeck submission deadline for the Agri-Tech Global Project Award call for which you are applying.

Stage 6: Pitch to the Ceres Investment Committee.

Pitches are short 15-minute presentations by appropriate members of your project team, followed by up to 25 minutes of questions.

How Ceres can help you?

The Ceres Team will help you work through key questions such as

  • What problem are you trying to solve?
  • What is the commercial opportunity?
  • Rationale behind your idea, how will your proposed solution fix the problem if successfully proven?
  • What is your proposal, with timings and costs?
  • What will be the outputs?
  • What are your longer-term plans for commercialisation?

 

Developing your idea for Agri-Tech Global Project Award

The Ceres Team will help you work through key questions such as:

  • What problem are you trying to solve?
  • How big is the problem, i.e., what is the commercial opportunity?
  • How will your technology fix the problem?
  • What is the competition? Are there other solutions on the market and if so, how is yours better?
  • Who will your customers be and how will you get them to adopt your solution?
  • Have you worked with international farmers and growers to understand their needs?
  • What supporting data do you have to show your solution works?
  • Do you need to consider sponsors or industry collaborators? For example, who funded any prior work? If background intellectual property is involved, will you be free to exploit it during and after the Agri-Tech Global project?
  • How will you get your technology to market?
  • How much Agri-Tech Global funding do you need and what will you use it for? How long will the project take?
  • How will you structure the project? Have you included milestones (stop/go points during the project), and what are your longer-term plans i.e., after Agri-Tech Global funding.
  • Have you found international farmers and growers who will trial your innovation?
  • What will be the impacts in Lincolnshire and East Anglia?
  • How to pitch for success.

Preparing your Agri-Tech Global Project Award pitch

The Ceres Team will help you develop your project from idea to pitch to give your project the best chance of winning  Agri-Tech Global funding.

  • The Ceres team will talk you through the process and help you develop your pitchdeck.
  • Your pitch should contain ca 10-12 slides for the pitch itself, together with additional supporting slides covering all elements of your project in more detail.
  • It should focus on your business case.
  • The Project Award sample pitchdeck contains suggestions and guidance on the content required.
  • Pitches are short, 15-minute presentations by appropriate members of your project team, followed by up to 25 minutes of questions.
  • Your final pitchdeck must be submitted by the final submission date for Agri-Tech Global Project Award call for which you are applying.

Post Award Agri-Tech Global support

After your project is awarded funding, the Ceres Team will continue to support you on your journey towards commercialisation of your technology by facilitating:

  • Project management during the lifetime of the project.
  • Technology development to licensing stage.
  • IP protection and exploitation.
  • Technical feasibility studies and prototype development.
  • Access to mentor networks.
  • Establishment of spin-out companies.
  • Connection to potential onward investment.

Deadlines

 

 

Lincam Ceres-Agri-Tech: Universities of Lincoln Cambridge, UEA Call Open EOI Submission Deadline Final Pitchdeck  Submission Investment Committee
April 2024 Call 3 April 2024 29 May 2024 1 October 2024 22 October 2024
February 2024 Call 2 February 2024 2 April 2024 21 May 2024 12 June 2024
November 2023 Call 27 November 2023 18 December 2023 8 February 2024 28 February 2024